Everton are reportedly closing in on the signing of Swansea City defender Ashley Williams.
According to The Mirror, The Toffees’ newly-appointed manager Ronald Koeman wants to bring in the 31-year-old Wales international to Goodison Park as a replacement for John Stones, whom his club had sold to Manchester City for £47.5million last week.
The two clubs have reportedly agreed on £12m fee for 23-year-old Welshman’s transfer. Swansea had earlier this month turned down a £10m bid for the defender from Everton.
Williams, who is regarded as one of the best defenders in the English football, is expected to undergo a medical at Goodison Park later on Tuesday and sign a two-year deal with the Merseyside club. He has two years left on his contract with Swansea.
Williams has made more than 300 appearances for Swansea since joining the club in 2008 from Stockport County, where he played 162 games in five seasons.
The defender has also won 65 international caps since his debut in 2008. He captained the Wales’ team that reached the semifinals at Euro 2016 in France last month.
Williams was left out of Swansea’s squad for their friendly against Ligue 1 side Rennes at the Liberty Stadium on Saturday after he returned to training after an extended break following the European Cup.
Earlier this week, Swansea boss Francesco Guidolin had refused to say whether the Welshman will feature in the starting line-up for his club’s Premier League opener against Burnley on August 13.
“I don’t know the future, but I can say that right now Ashley Williams is our player,” he said.
“He is training with us. He is a little bit later than others, but it is normal for him. I don’t know about playing next week; it is difficult because he has only just begun to work in the last days.”